DOI: 10.3390/healthcare12040446 ISSN: 2227-9032

Living with Multimorbidity through Time: A Meta-Synthesis of Qualitative Longitudinal Evidence

Cheng Cheng, Martin Christensen
  • Health Information Management
  • Health Informatics
  • Health Policy
  • Leadership and Management

The growing prevalence of multimorbidity places a strain on primary healthcare globally. The current study’s aim was to identify, appraise, and synthesize published qualitative longitudinal research on individuals’ experiences concerning living with multimorbidity through time. The authors searched two electronic databases, MEDLINE and CINAHL, and performed an additional literature search in Google Scholar. A thematic synthesis approach was used to analyze the qualitative data across the studies. A total of 10 reports that met the inclusion and exclusion criteria were included in the synthesis. Five descriptive themes emerged from the analysis of the living experiences of individuals with multimorbidity: (1) perceiving multimorbidity, (2) managing chronic conditions, (3) emotional struggles in everyday life with multimorbidity, (4) interactions with the healthcare system and healthcare professionals, and (5) family support. This meta-synthesis provides insights into the diverse perceptions of multimorbidity and how individuals cope with their chronic conditions in their daily lives. The findings highlight the importance of establishing effective patient-centered care that acknowledges and supports the multifaceted needs of this population. It is also recommended to involve a psychological component in the care of individuals with multimorbidity, as part of a collaborative and interprofessional approach.

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